Biomimicry can help humans to coexist sustainably with fire

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Globally, flora, fauna and many indigenous cultures have evolved to coexist sustainably with fire. We argue that the key to sustainable contemporary human coexistence with wildfires is a form of biomimicry that draws on the evolutionary adaptations of organisms that survive (and flourish) in the fire regimes in which they reside.

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Fig. 1: Floristic representation of the Sensitive, Avoiders, Adaptive, Dependent (SAAD) model.
Fig. 2: Contemporary human system representation of the SAAD model.

Change history

  • 14 November 2018

    In the version of this Comment originally published, an incorrect version of Fig. 2 was used in the PDF. This has now been amended in all online versions of the Comment.


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Correspondence to Alistair M. S. Smith.

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Smith, A.M.S., Kolden, C.A. & Bowman, D.M.J.S. Biomimicry can help humans to coexist sustainably with fire. Nat Ecol Evol 2, 1827–1829 (2018).

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